25. August 2015 13:11
Spinal Stenosis is an orthopedic condition that causes constriction of the space in the spinal canal. This puts pressure on the vertebrae and nerve roots in the spine, leading to a pinching sensation in the lower back, legs, neck, shoulders or arms. The condition most commonly affects the lumbar spine and causes pain along the back of the leg. Spinal Stenosis is usually a result of age related wear and tear of the spine.
- Aging: As people age, the connective tissues between the spinal vertebrae begin to stiffen, leading to the development of bone spurs. This, in turn, weakens the vertebral discs and facet joints in the spinal canal. All these factors cause narrowing of the spinal canal.
- Genetic Factors: People who have a congenitally shorter spinal canal or anatomical deformities in the vertebrae may develop Spinal Stenosis.
- Instability Of The Spine: The spinal canal can also narrow when one vertebra slips on the other.
- Arthritis: Osteoarthritis causes gradual degeneration of the discs that provide cushioning to the spinal vertebrae. This may result in narrowing of the space between the bones in the spine.
- Trauma: Injuries to the spine may dislocate or fracture the bones that produce fragments penetrating through the spinal canal.
- Severe pain
- Numbness and weakness in the legs, arms, shoulders or neck
- Tingling and pinching sensation in the legs
- Pins and needles feeling
- Pain reduces while bending forward
- Difficulty walking
- Clumsiness and frequent falling
- Abnormal bowel or bladder function
- Medications: The orthopedic doctor may prescribe certain anti-inflammatory medications to relieve pain and discomfort.
- Injections: In cases of severe pain, injections may be administered into the spine to provide immediate relief.
- Rest: Taking sufficient rest and refraining from activities that may strain the back can help to ease the symptoms of Spinal Stenosis.
- Activity Modification: The patient may also be recommended to make certain changes in his posture while doing daily activities. These may include leaning forward while walking, lying with the knees elevated, sitting on a recliner in place of a chair with a straight back. This can help to increase the space in the spinal canal and control the symptoms associated with the condition.
- Exercise: Staying physically active is important to maintain muscle strength and flexibility. Performing exercises, as instructed by the physical therapist, may also help to improve balance and regain spinal stability.
- Surgery: It may be recommended if the conservative treatment options fail to provide relief. During the procedure, the spine surgeon may remove the bony growths and bone fragments to free up the constricted space.
OrthoTexas, Frisco provides complete diagnosis and treatment for Spinal Stenosis. To schedule an appointment with our orthopedic surgeon, you can call at (214) 618 – 5502.
19. August 2015 06:09
A Pilon Fracture, also known as Plafond Fracture, is a break or crack in the distal part of the tibia (shinbone) near the ankle. It is usually caused due to high impact injuries to the ankle, which cause the bones to crush into several pieces. In some cases, a Pilon Fracture may affect both the bones in the lower leg, tibia and fibula.
Mainly, Pilon Fractures can be categorized as:
- Type 1 Fracture: This is caused by low energy injuries in which the bone fragments are almost aligned and the joint surface is also appropriate.
- Type 2 Fracture: This is a moderate energy injury in which the joint surface becomes incongruous.
- Type 3 Fracture: This is a high impact injury in which the joint surface becomes inconsistent and the fracture extends up to the tibia.
- Fall from a height
- Motor vehicle injuries
- Sports related injuries
- Skiing accidents
- Direct blow to the lower leg near the ankle
- Severe pain
- Swelling in the lower leg and around ankle joint
- Bruising and discoloration near the ankle
- Tenderness on touch
- Formation of blisters
- Inability to stand or walk
- Visible deformity in the ankle joint
Most Pilon Fractures require surgery to be treated completely. However, for patients with certain health problems or minimal physical activity, conservative treatment may be recommended.
- Immobilization: If the broken bone pieces are stable and not entirely misaligned, the orthopedic doctor may immobilize the ankle with the help of a cast or splint. Once the swelling subsides, the cast may be substituted with a brace that need to be worn for around 8 to 10 weeks.
- Anti-Inflammatory Medications: The orthopedic doctor may prescribe certain anti-inflammatory medications to provide relief from pain and compress swelling.
- External Fixation: It may be recommended in Pilon Fractures involving considerable damage to soft tissues. Certain external fixation devices, such as metal frames or screws, are used to stabilize the bones and allow the soft tissues to heal.
- Internal Fixation: It may be suggested in type 2 or 3 fractures. Metal plates, screws or rods may be implanted to hold the tibia fragments in place till the time they heal.
- Ankle Fusion: Surgery may be recommended in severe case of Pilon Fractures where the bone fragments are completely out of place. During the procedure, the orthopedic surgeon may reposition the fractured bone pieces into their original place.
The orthopedic surgeons at OrthoTexas, Allen provide complete diagnosis and treatment for Pilon Fracture. To schedule an appointment, you can call at (972) 727 – 9995 or visit 1125 Raintree Circle, Suites 100/100A, Allen, TX 75013.
12. August 2015 11:36
The radial nerve originates from the side of the neck and crosses through a tunnel, known as radial tunnel, which is formed by bone and muscles in the elbow, while passing down to the forearm. Radial Tunnel Syndrome, also known as Radial Nerve Entrapment, is a condition that results due to compression, pressing or pinching of the radial nerve while passing through the radial tunnel.
- Repetitive pushing and pulling of the wrist
- Forceful bending of the wrist
- Direct trauma or blow to the forearm or elbow
- Constant twisting movements of the arm
- Small sized tunnel
- Improper warm up and contact sports
- Pain that worsens when turning the palm or twisting the hand
- Reduced grip
- Tenderness in elbow
- Tingling sensation in hand and forearm
- Weakness in the wrist and arm
In order to diagnose the condition the orthopedic doctor may ask questions about the patient’s medical history and any previous injuries or pain. Certain tests such as Electromyogram (EMG) may help to determine if the muscles of the forearm are working efficiently. Nerve Conduction Velocity (NCV) also helps determine the condition by measuring the speed of the electrical impulse.
The orthopedic doctor devises a treatment plan after determining the extent of the condition. The patient maybe advised to take rest from any activities that aggravate pain, swelling and other symptoms. Ice treatment may also offer relief. The orthopedic doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medicines to control pain and inflammation. Besides medication, the patient may also need to modify the regular work routine and daily activities. The patient may need to wear an arm splint if the pain worsens at night, as it offers support to the elbow and eases any irritation. Physiotherapy also helps by stretching and strengthening the muscles and thus, helping the patient recover.
In case the non-surgical methods do not offer relief, then the orthopedic surgeon may recommend surgery. During the procedure, the surgeon decompresses the nerve by relieving pressure. It is usually an outpatient procedure, which is further followed by a rehabilitation period during which the patient is recommended certain exercises. Post surgery it is advised that the patient follow the surgeons instructions for quick relief and proper healing.
We, at OrthoTexas, provide complete diagnosis and treatment for Radial Tunnel Syndrome. To schedule an appointment with our orthopedic surgeons, you can call at (214) 618 – 5502 or visit 5757 Warren Pkwy, Suite 180, Frisco, Texas 75034.
5. August 2015 11:20
Custom splinting is a common procedure used in physical therapy for various orthopedic conditions of the upper extremities such as shoulder, elbow, wrist or hand. It involves the use of customized and specifically fabricated splints to restrict the movement of the affected joint as well as boost recovery. The splint provides support to the ligaments, nerves, tendons and soft tissues following an injury or surgery. The purpose of splinting is to offer relief from pain, discomfort, swelling and restore the strength of the affected muscles.
Types Of Splints
- Static Splints: These types of splints are mainly used to immobilize, protect and hold the injured tissues in place during the healing process. The material used to make static splints is quire firm such as steel, aluminum and certain types of plastic.
- Dynamic Splints: A dynamic splint has a fixed base with customized components that applies mild but static force to keep the joint or muscles towards a certain direction. These are used to regain movement in the joints that have become stiff following an injury or surgery. It also helps to restore the normal alignment of a dislocated or fractured joint.
- Static Progressive Splints: These splints also have a static base but apply mild pressure with the help of tape, adjustable hinges or screws. The purpose of a static progressive splint is to hold a stiff joint in its extreme end-range position and encourage it to increase its passive range of motion.
Conditions That May Require Custom Splinting
- Hand, Wrist Or Elbow Fractures
- Joint Dislocations
- Sprains And Strains
- Rotator Cuff Injuries
- Tennis Elbow
- Trigger Finger
- Muscle Strain
- Golfer’s Elbow
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- De Quervain's Tenosynovitis
- Tendon Injuries
- Nerve Compression
- Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
- Post-Surgical Tendon Repair
- Repetitive Strain Injury
- Mallet Finger
Benefits Of Custom Splinting
- Relaxes tender and swollen muscles, tendons, tissues and ligaments
- Provides support to weak and injured muscles
- Adjustable as swelling decreases
- Fabricated according to a patient’s joint structure to provide complete support
- Restores normal strength and flexibility of joints
- Provides protection to replaced or reconstructed structures following surgery
- Helps to mobilize stiff joints and constricted soft tissues
- Reduces the formation of scar tissue and contraction of tissues
- Facilitates early return to daily activities
- Maintains proper alignment of joint structures to prevent deformity
The physical therapists at OrthoTexas, specialize in providing custom splinting for a wide range of orthopedic conditions. For details about our physical therapy services you can call at (972) 985 – 1072 or visit 4031 West Plano Parkway Suite 100, Plano, Texas 75093.